Homebase garden furniture randomly burst into flames and set house on fire, mum says

A mum has described the terrifying moment her new set of garden furniture burst into flames and set fire to her house.

Kirsty Gawne, from Stockbridge Village near Liverpool, had spent around £400 on a set of outdoor rattan furniture from Homebase earlier this year.

However, things went wrong on July 19 when she smelt what she thought was a barbecue only to find part of her house on fire.

The 27-year-old came downstairs and noticed that her seven-month-old bulldog was under her feet and refusing to leave her side.

When she turned around she saw flames coming from her window and a huge plume of smoke from where her new rattan garden sofa set was.

Kirsty said she “panicked” and ran to get her four-year-old son and dog out of the house, where she screamed for help.

She told The Liverpool Echo : “The dog was around my feet and wouldn’t move which was really weird.

“I looked around and the living room was full of smoke and I could see flames through the window.

“I was panicking because I didn’t know where my phone was, my head fell off. I shouted my son and got the dog out and was screaming ‘help help help’ in the street.

“My neighbour but one said they had already seen the fire and called 999. I was so scared.”

“Firefighters told me they think the furniture couldn’t deal with the crazy heat and burst into flames. They said something about seeing a few incidents like this.

“The back windows have blown, the whole back of my couch in the living room is gone, my curtains are ruined and the ceiling is black.

“Knowsley Council have moved me out of my home and are unsure if I will be able to go back.

“I’d only been here for a few months, but I was settled and it was my home.”

Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service said: “Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service was called to Stockbridge Village. Crews were alerted at 11.47am and on scene at 11.52am. Three fire engines attended.

“On arrival crews found garden furniture involved in fire. The fire had also spread to nearby fencing. The fire had been extinguished by 12.09pm and fire crews remained on scene until 1.18pm.

“It is believed the fire started accidentally.”

Kirsty now wants to make people aware of what happened to her and urge others to keep an eye on their outdoor furniture in the heat.

She said: “A lot of people buy the rattan because it looks lovely, but if it can’t stand the heat then it’s not worth it. It’s also really expensive, I don’t think it’s worth the price if it sets your house on fire.

“I complained to Homebase but they asked me if I wanted a new one and I said absolutely not. They then told me to leave a product review.

“A product recall should be done.”

A Homebase spokesperson said: “We’re really sorry to hear about the damage caused to Ms Gawne’s home. We take product safety extremely seriously, and we’re looking into what happened.”